Airman testifies he was following deputy's orders

Airman testifies he was following deputy's orders
By Rod Leveque, Staff Writer
Article Launched: 06/04/2007 10:48:56 AM PDT

SAN BERNARDINO - The Air Force senior airman who was shot by a San Bernardino County sheriff's deputy at the end of a high-speed car chase in Chino testified today that he was following the deputy's orders to get up off the ground when the deputy shot him.

Elio Carrion said the deputy, Ivory J. Webb Jr., told him twice to stand up.

"I repeated, 'I'm going to get up,'" Carrion testified. "As I get up, he shoots me."

Carrion took the witness stand Monday as Webb's trial resumed in San Bernardino Superior Court.

Webb is charged with attempted voluntary manslaughter and assault with a firearm in connection with the shooting.

Carrion was the passenger in a Corvette that led several sheriff's deputies in a high-speed chase on Jan. 29, 2006. The driver, Luis Escobedo, eventually lost control and crashed into a fence on Francis Street in Chino.

A videotape of the altercation that followed appears to show Webb shoot Carrion as the unarmed man followed the deputy's orders to stand up while he surrendered.

Prosecutors say the tape is evidence of Webb's guilt.

Webb's lawyers claim the shooting was justified.

They say Carrion did not follow the deputy's commands to surrender and reached a hand toward his jacket, as though he were grabbing for a weapon.

Carrion, who was shot three times, came to San Bernardino Superior Court on Monday wearing a black suit over a white dress shirt and red tie. He wore his hair in a short, military-style cut.

He described the altercation calmly from the witness stand.

Deputy District Attorney Lewis Cope again played the videotape of the shooting for jurors while Carrion was on the witness stand.

He will continue to testify throughout the day.

Carrion required months of rehabilitation to recover, and has since returned to light duty at Barksdale Air Force Base in Louisiana.

He is here on leave to testify.

Staff writer Rod Leveque can be reached by e-mail at r_leveque@dailybulletin.com, or by phone at (909) 483-9325.

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